In 2014, nearly 24 thousand requests for asylum were submitted in the Netherlands, an increase by 66 percent relative to 2013 and the highest number since 2002, although the number of requests submitted in 2014 is still far below the level recorded in the 1990s.
Mainly Syrians and Palestinians from Syria
Last year, most asylum seekers arriving in the Netherlands were Syrians fleeing the war raging in their country. The number of requests submitted by Syrians rose to 9.5 thousand, i.e. nearly 40 percent the total. The number of stateless people increased rapidly from more than 200 in 2013 to nearly 2.8 thousand in 2014. Most stateless individuals were Palestinians from Syria.
Nearly 4 thousand asylum seekers came from Eritrea in 2014.
Following family members: residence permit without asylum request
Since the end of March 2014, following family members are no longer obliged to submit a request for asylum, but they receive a residence permit on arrival. If this change in legislation is not taken into account, the number of asylum requests would have been 4 thousand higher. In the past, following family members had to complete the entire asylum procedure and were included in the total number of asylum requests.
1990s: requests for asylum soaring
Since the beginning of the twenty-first century, the annual number of asylum requests has varied between 10 and 15 thousand, but - with 24 thousand - this number was well exceeded in 2014.
In the 1990s, the number of asylum seekers had been distinctly higher. In record year 1994, nearly 53 thousand asylum seekers arrived in the Netherlands. At the time, the largest group came from war-ridden former Yugoslavia.
Source: StatLine, Asylum requests.